Grass Roots Gains – why Jarrod Owens Motorsport and Acronis make the perfect match

In just a few short years, Acronis has become a global leader in cyber protection, data storage and back-up and is a business valued at over $1 billion.

It’s now a globally recognisable brand. And, due to the medium of sport, the Acronis logo appears on Formula One, Formula E, IndyCar and NASCAR team cars, as well as global football giants including Manchester City, FC Internazionale and Arsenal, and the Boston Red Sox Baseball team.

Yet it’s not just the ‘big fish’ in the pond that Acronis is committed to helping. The company also builds schools in Africa through the ‘Acronis Foundation’ and supports many teams and drivers throughout the grass roots of motorsport.

One of those teams in question is Jarrod Owens Motorsport, currently competing in the South Island Endurance Series in New Zealand, specifically in the One Hour endurance category. Last weekend, Jarrod piloted his Porsche GT3 Cup S to second at Highlands, putting himself in with a good shot at the title with two rounds remaining.

It may come as a surprise to many, but motorsport in New Zealand really is a massive thing, even challenging Rugby Union for the affection of fans as the most popular sport in the country. The man who pipped Owens for top spot on Saturday, German-born Marco Schlep, actually thinks the ‘land of the white cloud’ boasts some of the best circuits on the planet.

“Yes, he (Schlep) thinks Highlands is the best facility in the world, and he’s raced on many of the best, including the Nürburgring,” Owens told Motorsport Tech. “As for the race itself, it was a really enjoyable one. I got caught up in a little bit of traffic, which cost me, and Marco used all his experience to great effect. I was perhaps a little more cautious than the others in the traffic around me, but it was a good race, I was fastest on the track and I was pretty happy with second place.

“We are sitting second in the championship now, but it could be even better. I had some bad luck in the opening round at Teratonga Park, when I was in the lead during the second half of the race with only five minutes to go. Unfortunately, I spun trying to avoid two slower cars that had stopped suddenly on a corner and maybe why I was a little cautious at Highlands. But we also set a new lap record at Teratonga, so I’m pretty happy with my form at the moment.”

If Jarrod comes across as talking like a seasoned campaigner and Kiwi motorsport stalwart, that may be a little misleading. The Christchurch native actually competes in motorsport for the pure love of the game, and hasn’t been doing so all that long. He currently juggles time going flat out in his Porsche with the pressures of managing a business, ‘onevision’, involved in the installation of solar panels for domestic and commercial property, as well as installing residential and commercial security systems.

“I’ve only been circuit racing for three years, actually,” adds Jarrod. “Before that, I just competed in the odd club event hill climbs and street sprints. I came third overall in the South Island endurance series 1hr in my rookie year, then won the 1hr New Zealand Endurance championship in 2017 at Ruapuna raceway and set a new lap record. I was pretty stoked with that, because it’s the pinnacle of NZ endurance racing, so it’s probably my best result.

“Following that, I won the Euromarque sprint series at Highlands park in 2017 and won the last round of the 1hr North island endurance at Manfield 2018. It was all looking pretty good when I followed that up by winning the 1hr New Zealand endurance championship at Highlands Park, but the celebrations were muted when I was handed a safety car infringement notice for passing a slower car under yellow and was penalised 50 seconds and so ended up coming third overall. That’s motorsport, I guess, so you have to take the highs with the lows!”

With Jarrod’s day job also heavily based in technology, security and renewable energy solutions, it’s perhaps no surprise that Acronis approached Jarrod to help him out in another vital area of security – that of cyber protection, data storage and back-up. Yet another team that Acronis is keeping #CyberFit.

“Acronis has an amazing data back-up service, and our office staff attest to the fact that it’s a far superior product to anything else available on the market and is also used by many of my clients. But it’s not only on a business level as to why Acronis is so good – I also use it for all my personal cyber security and data storage, as do my friends. It’s great to be in partnership with such an amazing product, and I’m proud to have it on my car.”

What, then, does the future hold for Jarrod Owens Motorsport? For now, motorsport remains a favourite hobby. Race wins and titles at this level are the immediate goal, but the affable Kiwi isn’t ruling out spreading his wings at some stage.

“Our North Island and South Island endurance racing events are the best racing in the country and with a huge following. You can race almost anything you like, and the fields are usually full capacity. We have a large following the events are usually live streamed on The Fast Files, YouTube and Facebook pages and viewed from all over the world. The Fast Files had 25000 views for the last round.

“One day, I’d like to race at some of the world’s most iconic venues, with the Nürburgring and Spa Francorchamps specifically springing to mind. But that’s one for the future, perhaps. For now, I’m happy doing what I’m doing but also keep a keen interest in the WEC (World Endurance Racing), World Rally Championships, which I also see Acronis now involved in, and Australian V8 supercars – where again I see the Acronis brand also pop up! Motorsport is a great family to be involved in, and I’m pleased to be in such a great partnership.”

Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.